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Hope Aston Villa stay up, says Alan Pardew

Crystal Palace goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey allows the ball to slip from his grasp and roll over the line. Photograph: Rui Vieira/AP
Crystal Palace goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey allows the ball to slip from his grasp and roll over the line. Photograph: Rui Vieira/AP

Crystal Palace boss Alan Pardew hopes Aston Villa can avoid relegation from the Premier League, saying no one in the top flight of English football would want to lose a club of their “magnitude”.

Placed bottom of the table currenty, Aston Villa beat Palace 1-0 to give new manager Remi Garde his first win for the club. Despite the rare win though, Villa remain eight points from safety with 17 games remaining, but Pardew is keen for them to stay afloat.

“I hope they do, they’re a great club,” he said. “The Premier League would not want to lose a club of this magnitude. I hope they can resolve it.”

Villa’s victory over Palace was only their second league win since the opening day of the season, and it came with a smidgeon of good fortune. Palace goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey fumbled Joleon Lescott’s header and let the ball squirm over the line.

However, Pardew didn;t blame only his keeper for the defeat.

“Wayne’s first touch puts him in trouble,” he said. “He has been brilliant for us and his mistake cost us the goal but we made mistakes in other areas all night.

“They go unnoticed – as much as the goal is going to be a highlight for everyone else.”

For Villa, it was fitting that Lescott was the saviour. The defender was subject to criticism over the weekend, accused of playing a game with chewing gum with Brad Guzan while they were substitutes during the 1-1 FA Cup draw at Wycombe.

Former Aston Villa skipper Andy Townsend condemned the incident, calling the pair “immature”.

While the two were booed by the crowd before the game, Garde said the former England international is an integral part of his side.

“I didn’t speak with Joleon about this stuff,” he said.

“I am pleased with the way he gave an answer but not an answer regarding this fact.

“He is an experienced player and should be very important for the team.”

Of the win, Garde: “It was a nice feeling to feel the crowd behind the players, it’s very important.

“We cannot be happy too long – we have to build on this one.”

Villa now play second-placed Leicester at home on Saturday.

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